Tropical Modernity: Neutra, Burle-Marx and Cuba - De Schulthess House

Wed, Mar 8, 2017, 12:00 pm

PLAS Fellows Series

Featuring: Eduardo Luis Rodriguez

Visiting Professional Specialist and Visiting Lecturer in Latin American Studies and Princeton-Mellon Initiative in Architecture, Urbanism and the Humanities


The Alfred de Schulthess residence, built in Cuba between 1954 and 1956 according to a project by Richard Neutra and with gardens designed by Roberto Burle-Marx, is a remarkable work of the Caribbean architectural heritage. This presentation will reveal some key elements of its design process through the scouring of original material, including the correspondence exchanged between the designers and the clients.  Essential elements of the discussion will be the analysis of Neutra’s efforts to properly integrate the building into the tropical environment, as well as the last renovation of the house.

Eduardo Luis Rodríguez (1959), Cuban architect and architectural historian has spearheaded the study and promotion of Twentieth Century architecture in Cuba. He has served as curator of several major architectural exhibitions and authored numerous publications, including La Habana. Arquitectura del Siglo XX (Blume, Barcelona, 1998) and The Havana Guide, Modern Architecture, 1925-1965 (Princeton Architectural Press, New York, 2000).  Currently President of the Cuban Chapter of Docomomo International, he is also a member of the National Landmarks Commission and the ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Twentieth Century Heritage. A Guggenheim Fellow, he served recently as a member of the Advisory Board for the Museum of Modern Art exhibition Latin American in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980.  Mr. Rodríguez has received awards from the Venice Biennale (2000) and the International Committee of Architectural Critics (CICA, 2008), among others. He lectures frequently in the international academic circuit and teaches seminars on the history and preservation of Cuban architecture regularly.

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216 Burr Hall